Maine Mendoza may be known for her comic antics as the Dubsmash Queen, but she speaks her mind on serious issues she feels strongly about.
The Kapuso phenomenal star has surprised the media and public alike with her bold statements, and as she marks her third anniversary since she first appeared in GMA-7’s noontime show Eat Bulaga!, PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) looks back on some of Maine's strong opinions about mental health, dealing with bashers and trolls, and her personal journey as a celebrity.
1. ON DEPRESSION. Topping the list was when she took a stand against the statement of Eat Bulaga! co-host Joey de Leon trivializing depression as “gawa-gawa lang ng mga tao.”
This happened during the live telecast of the show’s "Juan For All, All For Juan" segment on October 5, 2017, wherein a Sugod Bahay winner opened up about being diagnosed with depression by her doctor.
Below was an excerpt of the ensuing reaction of Dabarkads Joey, Jose Manalo, Maine, and Alden Richards:
Joey (studio): "Yung depression gawa-gawa lang ng mga tao 'yan."
Jose (remote location): "Oo, dine-depress niyo lang ang sarili ninyo, 'tapos nagkakaroon ng sakit. Kaya nga yung stress diyan nag-uumpisa yun."
Maine (remote location): "Uy, pero hindi biro yun, ha, yung depression. Hindi siya joke. Kasi siyempre maraming nakakaranas nun lalo na sa mga kabataan. Kaya dapat kapag merong nakakaranas ng ganun, bigyan natin ng suporta."
Alden (remote location): "Moral support."
Maine: "Kasi kailangan niya yun."
Joey: "Hindi. Gawa-gawa lang niya yun. Pabayaan niyo."
This resulted in Joey getting blasted by netizens and issuing a public apology for dismissing depression as a simple mental “stress” problem.
He said he was ashamed of himself, especially when his wife Eileen Macapagal-de Leon pointed out to him that some people close to them suffer from depression.
2. ON ASSERTING HER RIGHT TO PRIVACY. On November 17, 2017, Maine shocked the public with her open letter to fans about feeling fed up with people imposing their demands on her.
“Do not get me wrong, I am thankful for everything I have right now. And I have the Lord and the people who helped and supported me along the way to thank for that.
“I just could not take how some people feel so entitled in so many things, hindi lang sa career, ultimo personal na buhay.
“Minsan nga tinatanong ko ang sarili ko, sino ba talaga ang gumawa sa akin? Ang Diyos ba o sila?
“Pagmamay-ari ba nila buong pagkatao ko para diktahan ako sa halos lahat ng bagay? Bakit ganun?
“Ganun ba dapat kapag mahal mo yung tao? Susubukan mong kontrolin ng naaayon sa kagustuhan mo? Dahil tingin mo yun yung tama? Dahil tingin mo doon siya liligaya?”
At the risk of alienating the fans who catapulted her love team with Alden Richards to stardom, Maine also made it clear that they are not romantically involved at all.
She said in her letter, “When AlDub happened, everything escalated. My life changed drastically when Kalyeserye began.
“We’ve had blessings on top of blessings. Alden and I were given so much more than we could ask for.
“But more than anything, we will be forever thankful that God had given us people like you.
“People who support us in the things we do; those who always stood by our sides and defended us against judgments and criticisms; those who love us truthfully as a pair and as two different individuals; and those who never gave up.
“And for all the love and efforts you have given us, you deserve to know the truth that at this very moment Alden and I are just friends.
“We are a love team.”
She then asked for “freedom” to feel what she wants to feel and do what she wants to do.
“Alden, deserves the same too,” Maine concluded.
Unrealistic expectations attendant to fame have clearly taken a toll on Maine.
Following her open letter, she took a month-long leave from showbiz.
Her fans were alarmed that she might quit showbiz altogether.
But after spending time with her family abroad, Maine resumed her hosting stint in Eat Bulaga! on January 1, 2018.
On April 25, her talent manager Rams David told PEP.ph in an exclusive interview that Maine is happy with her hosting stint, but that she has "begged off" from doing any "teleserye" work for now.
3. ON BEING A CELEBRITY. In her book Yup I am That Girl, Maine admits feeling like she’s not cut out for showbiz in the long term.
She also hints about her inner struggle with her status as a celebrity.
“A life of a celebrity revolves around so many things. Things that people see, things that people choose to see, and things that no one can see,” she wrote
But despite her misgivings, Maine also acknowledges that being a celebrity has its advantages such as giving inspiration to supporters who are struggling.
Here are words of encouragement excerpted from her book:
“Things may go from bad to worse and you might feel like it’s never going to change, but believe me when I say it will get better. Everything will be alright, I promise you.
“We may have our own different battles, but there is only one God. He is always looking down on us wherever we go and whatever obstacles we face…
“Marami pang magagandang bagay ang mangyayari sa buhay mo. Magtiwala ka. Kapit lang, laban lang.”
4. ON CALLING OUT BASHERS. Maine had called out haters on social media a number of times.
She has deactivated her Twitter account every now and then for digital detox.
Most times though she just laughs off the nasty comments, even those below the belt.
One such instance was when she answered hate tweets calling her “pangit, chaka, mukhang katulong.”
In a video from her Snapchat dated February 2, 2016, Maine started reading negative comments from bashers.
One basher wrote, “Sobrang chaka mo. Laki ng bunganga mo.”
Maine calmly responded, “True ‘yon. True ‘yon.”
A similar comment from another basher, “Ipinanganak ka ba talagang pangit?”
To which Maine replied, “Pfft! Obvious ba?”
Another basher told her, “Mukha kang katulong ni Alden. Bakit hindi ka na lang mag-yaya? Bagay naman sa 'yo.”
Maine retorted, “Alam mo, iniisip ko rin talaga yun, e. Puwede!”
She ended the video feeling “bored” with her bashers’ lack of creativity.
5. ON THE ART OF DEADMA. Maine once admitted geting “odd satisfaction” from reading messages from her haters, but generally she has been staying away from unnecessary negativity.
In her book Yup, I am That Girl, she shares useful tips about dealing with haters.
One of her favorite mantra is, “Do not give a sh*t about what other people think.”